Daily Post 1359


A cyber hack / breach, outage of humungous proportions is the last thing one would like to get into when most of things being treated normal have already got into the ”outaged” state. On Monday, sudden and wide ranging outages in online communications services in the US seems to be the result of a well coordinated attack. Downdetector, the outage aggregator said that users reported outages in major mobile carriers, internet providers, social media platforms, games and game services, streaming services, banks and other major platforms like Google and Zoom.

The last time Facebook experienced a disruption of this magnitude was way back in 2008. Then Facebook had 150 million users compared around 2.3bn monthly users today. Facebook recovered from a 14 hour disruption of its products the world over. Those on Instagram were not able to refresh feeds or post new material. Facebook messenger’s desktop version did not load. Such outages hit hard on revenue when most of the business models are based on advertising revenue. Possibility of refunds might also happen. The third party outage map indicated that the problem was global. According to this site, areas of Europe and Asia were reporting problems till much later. This is in political backdrop of legislators in US and beyond considering whether large technology firms should be broken down, the first naturally being Facebook.

Nearly 100,000 T-Mobile users claimed to be having problems. Areas affected by the cell phone outages included Miami, Fort Lauderdale, Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, New York and Los Angeles. Digital Attack Map shared a visualisation of a massive scale attack that appeared to show more than 200 attacks directed towards the US. Anonymous, the infamous hacker’s group sounded the alarm of widespread attack through its Twitter handle. Possibly, there can also be a connect. The attack as per this group was ”absolutely gorgeous” but seems to have fallen short of accepting it.

DDoS, distributed denial of service attack is the favoured mode of downing services. ”The source of the DDoS attack on the United States is currently unknown. We speculate it may be China as the situation between South and North Korea is currently deteriorating.” Large scale attacks like the one purported to have happened on Monday are rare. In the midst of the health crisis the world is facing, a major crash of telecom and internet services, which these attacks intend to do, will add to our misery.


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